Lightning: Awareness and Safety

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Lightning Kills! Play it Safe

Maine has the 6th highest per capita lightning casualties rate in the US.

From 2004-2013, Maine's fatality rate per capita ranked 6th highest in the country. These statistics are rather alarming since Maine and New Hampshire have considerably less lightning than virtually all of the country east of the Rocky Mountains. With all our summer recreation activities, and all the visitors to our great outdoors, sometimes we forget to take basic safety precautions.

Lightning facts…

  • No place outside is safe during a thunderstorm.
  • If you hear thunder, you’re likely within striking distance of the storm.

More lightning facts ...


  • Plan outdoor activities to avoid thunderstorms
  • Monitor weather conditions. If you hear thunder, get inside a substantial building immediately.
  • If a substantial building is not available, get inside a hard-topped metal vehicle.
  • Avoid open areas and stay away from isolated tall objects.

More about outdoor lightning safety ...

Indoors …

  • Avoid contact with any equipment connected to electrical power, such as computers or appliances.
  • Avoid contact with water or plumbing.
  • Stay off corded phones.
  • Stay away from windows and doors.
  • Remain inside for 30 minutes after the last rumble of thunder is heard.

More about indoor lightning safety ...

If someone is struck …

  • Victims do not carry an electrical charge and may need immediate medical attention.
  • Call 911 for help.
  • Monitor the victim and begin CPR or use an AED if necessary.

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